How We CARE for our AIr
Our Multiple Layers of Aerosol Protection
- All patients and staff wear masks at all times. We start all patients with temperature checks, handwashing, COVID symptoms questions, and two 30 second swishing with an antivirus oral solution. The first swishing removes proteins and mucous from saliva, the second swishing kills viruses and bacteria, up to 99.9%. (J of Med Virol, 09/17/20). So, when we start our dental treatment, we are starting in a clean oral environment. This is our first layer of protection.
- We use High Speed Evacuation during dental hygiene and dental treatment, which has been shown to reduce contamination from the operative site by more than 90 percent. These high speed suctions are powered by two strong vacuum pumps, removing up to 100 cubic feet of air per minute. Any aerosols are removed right next to the tooth, before it can exit into the room air. This is our second layer of protection.
- We have ten air purifiers, one in each treatment room, waiting room, and business area. The HEPA Filter in Coway Mighty air purifiers remove particles down to 0.3 microns (virus size) 99.97% of time. It is designed to accommodate room sizes up to 361 sq. ft. Our treatment rooms are much smaller, so our air is filtered frequently. The New York Times consumer reports department, thewirecutter.com rates Coway Mighty as their Editors Choice!
This is our third Layer of Protection.
- Our Air Conditioner. There once was a window by the front desk. Now it is a wall with a picture, hiding the intake duct pulling fresh outside San Francisco air in and blowing it down from the ceiling in each room individually. Then it exits out a duct at the back of the office, to the outside. This is OUR air conditioner, not shared with the building. If any aerosols escape the first three levels, our air conditioner also filters our air. This is our fourth layer of protection.
We have a “Swiss Cheese” approach to risk reduction: Any single layer of protection may have holes. But multiple layers can plug those holes. We do not rely on a single precautionary strategy.